Derby County Under-18s secured their place in the fifth round of the FA Youth Cup with an imposing 3-0 victory over Sheffield United at Pride Park.
The Rams began the better of the two sides and after just ten minutes made possession count as Jason Knight was in position to power a header passed Marcus Dewhurst from Louie Sibley’s corner.
Knight then looked to double Derby’s lead midway through the half but his effort at goal from the edge of the Blades’ area was easily collected by Dewhurst.
Morgan Whittaker then should have found himself on the scoresheet just minutes later, after cleverly putting himself one-on-one with Dewhurst, the Blades’ goalkeeper somehow made a sprawling save.
With just minutes of the first half remaining the pressure told and assistor turned scorer as Sibley latched onto Tyree Wilson’s pass inside the box and made no mistake in hammering the ball in.
The Under-18s continued the second half as they had ended the first with an assistor again turning scorer, this time Tyree Wilson drew a foul in United’s penalty area and stepped up to slam home the resulting spot-kick.
Derby enjoyed large spells of possession for the remainder of the half with neither side forcing a chance until Sibley should have doubled his goal tally for the evening, but bearing down on the goal Dewhurst was again able to deny Derby one-on-one.
The Rams comfortably saw out the remaining 15 minutes of the game with little pressure at either end to seal their place in the fifth round of the FA Youth Cup.
What’s To Come…
While the Under-18’s opposition in the fifth round has not yet been drawn, Justin Walker’s side return to league action against Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.
The young Rams take on Rovers at the Blackburn Rovers Training Centre in the Premier League – North looking for Derby’s eight successive victory in all competitions.
When the two sides met earlier in the season back in August, Derby were 2-1 winners at the Training Centre in Partnership with the University of Derby.
The Next Five…
Blackburn Rovers U18s Vs Derby County U18s – Saturday 19th January 2019 (kick-off: 12:30pm)
Derby County U18s Vs Tottenham Hotspur – Friday 25th January 2019 (kick-off: 7pm)
Derby County U18s Vs Manchester City U18s – Saturday 2nd February 2019 (kick-off: 12pm)
Middlesbrough U18s Vs Derby County U18s – Saturday 23rd February 2019 (kick-off: 1pm)
Derby County U18s Vs Newcastle United U18s – Saturday 2nd March 2019 (kick-off: 1pm)
Words by Andrew Haines